This is up-to-the-minute information from Christian Beuggert, GBIM Team Leader who is in Manila and with whom we spoke this morning. Many news reports are available through the news agencies about the devastation of the floods in Greater Manila. We will not take the space here to review those details. But, we want to update you on how this has affected our missionaries and national brothers and sisters so you can pray and help us in this relief effort.
Marikina GBC family
The Marikina area of Manila was one of the hardest hit and where much of the serious damage was done. Pastor Franco and his family survived the flood waters clinging to whatever they could hold onto as the waters reached the rooftop of their home. They are all safe, but have lost most if not all of their belongings.
One of the worst hit area is nearby, an area where some of our families live. It is along the river that overflowed. This area is totally devastated. Christian Beuggert, Team Leader for the Philippines, said that “it was a scene he has never witnessed before and hopes he never has to see again” referring to the devastation. Nearly all of the people living there are now homeless and barely surviving, needing water, food, clothing and medicines.
Pasig GBC family
Pasig also experienced some flooding, but Pastor Adan and wife Esme were able to save most things from the flooding. This church is trying to reach out to many in the neighborhood who are now in need and suffering, who are also in need of these same things.
Sumulong GBC family
The church building fortunately is on higher ground, and though they had some flooding (waist high in some places) there was not as much damage or loss as in other areas. However, there are some members of the church who live in the lower areas that have been affected by the flooding.
Rey and Alma Paz
These National Ministry Partners were not directly in the path of the typhoon in Il Locos Norte, but they have a family home in Marikina where their son and his family were living. The home is not structurally damaged but they lost most of their belongings.
Nilo & Judy Ledesma
These NMPs have been living in the Sumulong church building and though they did not experience much damage. However, Nilo’s serious heart condition (he is awaiting heart surgery) does present a potentially serious situation if the ensuing sicknesses from the flooding should sweep through the area.
Dave and Rose Torres
The Torres were also not directly affected by the storm at their home in Baguio.
Olive was also not directly affected by the storm.
HOWEVER...all of these people have relatives and church family connections to people in the affected areas. So, even if these national ministry partners were not directly affected, it is certain that they have relatives and church members who have been.
Ted and Vivien have been in the US on home ministries so they were in Winona Lake, IN at the time of the storm. However, the neighborhood where they have a rented house was severely damaged. In fact, although the house was not seriously damaged structurally, most of the Ruiz’s personal belongings have been probably been lost and there is a lot of interior damage. It is uncertain at this point what can be salvaged, such as their van, appliances and furniture, but most things like clothing, documents and books are unsalvageable. Those who have been to the house are not hopeful that much can be saved.
Ted & Viv will leave tomorrow, Friday, for Manila in order to join Christian in the relief efforts and to assess their own personal loss. In the meantime, some Filipino helpers who were living in the Ruiz’s home (and were safe from the flooding on the second floor), are starting to sort through their things and salvage what they can.
• Another typhoon is headed for northern Philippines! At this point, the projections are that the storm will hit Luzon island either late tomorrow night but hit quite a bit north of Manila. There will be surrounding rains however, even if the center passes north, and Manila may again be affected due to the saturated ground. So, we are planning for additional flooding.
• Christian Beuggert and the Ruizes will be meeting together on Sunday to coordinate their efforts in implementing the plan of relief efforts.
• Christian has visited all of the places mentioned above and has distributed money to those in critical need so that they can buy food and other things they need immediately. We thank God that there is around $10,000 available for this immediate relief.
• Residual sickness from the sewage and polluted water and injuries (such as cuts, sores and infections from walking through the muddy waters is pervasive. We are providing some aid in this area from what we can take over, but money will be needed to buy what we can over there.
• So, there is a great need for much more money to supply food, clean water, clothing, medicine and other items. Click here to be a part of this effort by giving online or send gifts to GBIM, PO Box 80065, City of Industry, CA 91716-8065 with a note marked RAB-Philippines Relief Fund. The love of the people of God is what is needed the most at this time!!
• Please re-read this news article and use it as a prayer guide. The challenge for us who are already mobilized to bring relief and love to those who are suffering is to have wisdom and a heart of sacrifice as we give ourselves as the hands and feet for the love of Christ during this time. Please pray for the GBIM staff in the Philippines, in Asia and at the home office who are all a part of this outpouring of love.
• One more significant thing to pray for…that our Filipino brothers and sisters will bind themselves together in a united effort to reach out to their suffering friends and neighbors, and that the love of the Lord Jesus and the truth of the Gospel will touch many lives during this time. While this is already happening, we can help to empower the believers through our prayers that through their testimony of love, many will come to Christ through this tragedy.